Mixed picture for United Kingdom growth as construction sector slumps

A construction site in London

On a yearly basis, industrial production growth accelerated to 3.6 percent from 2.5 percent in September.

The U.K. manufacturing industry posted its sixth monthly expansion in a row for the first time on record in October, new figures showed, a sign that British producers are benefiting from the pound's weakness and strong global demand. Industrial output is expected to remain flat in October, following a 0.7% rise in September.

It was helped by the auto industry, which saw a significant increase in exports, with demand in the eurozone growing.

Separately, the ONS also said the United Kingdom goods trade deficit with the rest of the world widened slightly in October, to GBP10.8 billion, from the revised September figure of GBP10.5 billion.

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Excluding oil and erratic commodities, a £2.8bn increase in imports offset a £1.7bn increase in exports to leave the UK's trade deficit £800m wider during the three month period.

Manufacturing accounts for around 10 per cent of overall UK GDP and construction 6 per cent. Businesses, particularly financial services companies, have held off on commissioning new offices, for example.

"However, construction orders for future work received a huge boost in the third quarter as many large HS2 contracts were awarded".

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